Oct. 1, 2012
LOGAN, Utah -
WHAT TO WATCH FOR...
UTAH STATE at BYU
GAME SIX INFORMATION Date: Friday, Oct. 5, 2012 Kickoff: 8:21 p.m. (MT) Location: Provo, Utah Stadium: LaVell Edwards Stadium (63,470) Series: Utah State trails, 34-44-3 TV: ESPN Carter Blackburn (Play-by-Play) Rod Gilmore (Analyst) Shelley Smith (Reporter) Radio: Utah State Sports Network Al Lewis (Play-by-Play) Craig Hislop (Analyst) Live Stats: UtahStateAggies.com Twitter Updates: /USUFootball YouTube: /USUAthletics Facebook: /USUFootball Tickets: 1-800-322-BYU1
Utah State's 4-1 start to the season is its best since 1978 when that Aggie team won its first five games of the year. Overall, USU has won nine of its last 11 games with its only losses during that stretch coming against Ohio (24-23) in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, and at No. 22 Wisconsin (16-14) this season.
Utah State's 9-2 record in its last 11 games under head coach Gary Andersen is its best stretch since going 10-1 during the 1972-73 seasons as the 1972 team won its final five games and the 1973 squad started the year with a 5-1 record.
Utah State has won four of its last five road games dating back to 2011, including a 1-1 record this year as it lost at No. 22 Wisconsin (16-14) and won at Colorado State (31-19). USU ended the 2011 season with road wins at Hawai`i (35-31), Idaho (49-42 2OT), and New Mexico State (24-21). Overall, USU is 6-15 (.286) in road games under Andersen.
Utah State and BYU will be meeting for the 82nd time in series history this weekend in what is the second-most played rivalry in school history. USU's most played rivalry is Utah (110), followed by BYU (81), Colorado State (69) and Wyoming (63).
Utah State is 5-3 against teams from the state of Utah under Andersen and has won four of its last five games against in-state opponents including wins this year against Southern Utah (34-3) and Utah (27-20 OT).
Utah State has 55 players in its program from the state of Utah, while BYU has 43 players on its roster from the Beehive state.
Utah State has out-scored its opponents 51-0 in the first quarter this year and 85-16 in the first-half as UNLV was the first team to score a first-half touchdown against Utah State. Overall, USU has led at the half in all five games this season and in seven straight games dating back to the Nevada game in 2011.
During the last two years, nine of Utah State's last 12 games have been decided by one score, while seven of its last 11 games had the winning points scored in the final minute of regulation or in overtime. Overall, USU has won six of its last eight games decided by one score dating back to the 2011 season.
Utah State is 3-9 in October under Andersen and 3-4-1 all-time in games played on Oct. 5.
UTAH STATE CONTINUES SERIES OF ROAD GAMES AT BYU FRIDAY NIGHT
Utah State (4-1, 0-0 WAC) continues its 2012 season with its third road game in the last four weeks at in-state rival Brigham Young (3-2) on Friday, Oct. 5 at 8:21 p.m. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN with Carter Blackburn (play-by-play), Rod Gilmore (analyst) and Shelley Smith (reporter) on the call. Live audio and streaming of the game is also available at www.UtahStateAggies.com. Live stats will be available through GameTracker, while Twitter updates - @USUFootball - will also be a part of Utah State's gameday coverage.
BATTLE FOR THE OLD WAGON WHEEL
Utah State and BYU will be playing for possession of `The Old Wagon Wheel', the traveling trophy between the two schools, this Friday night. The Old Wagon Wheel became part of the rivalry in 1948. Since its inception, BYU holds a 36-22 advantage in the series and currently holds possession of the traveling trophy after its 27-24 win last year in Provo. USU claimed the trophy in 2010 after defeating the Cougars in Logan, 31-16.
UTAH STATE LOOKING TO WIN BEEHIVE BOOT FOR EIGHTH TIME
With its 27-20 overtime win against Utah already in the books, Utah State can win the Beehive Boot for the second time in the last three years and eighth time since its inception in 1971 with a win against BYU this weekend. USU also won the Beehive Boot in 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1982, 1997 and 2010. BYU has won the Beehive Boot 22 times and Utah has won it 12 times.
UTAH STATE PLAYING FIRST GAME OF THE YEAR ON NATURAL GRASS
After playing its first five games of the season on artificial surfaces, Utah State will play its first game of the 2012 campaign on natural grass when it faces BYU Friday night at LaVell Edwards Stadium. In fact, USU's game at BYU will be its only regular season outing of the year played on natural grass.
UTAH STATE IN NON-SATURDAY GAMES
Utah State is 2-0 this year and 3-4 under current head coach Gary Andersen in non-Saturday games after defeating Southern Utah (34-3) on Thursday, Aug. 30 and Utah (27-20 OT) on Friday, Sept. 7 of this season. Furthermore, USU is 2-3 in games played on Friday under Andersen as three of those games were against BYU, one was versus Boise State, and the other was against Utah this season.
UTAH STATE-BYU SERIES IN THE FUTURE
Utah State and BYU are schedule to play one another in each of the next three years as BYU will play in Logan in 2013, and USU will play in Provo in 2014 and 2015.
UTAH STATE ON ESPN
Utah State is making its second appearance on ESPN/ESPN2 this year with its game at BYU this Friday, Oct. 5. USU's home game against Utah on Friday, Sept. 7 was televised on ESPN2. Overall, it is the fourth-straight season that Utah State has had at least one game televised nationally on ESPN/ESPN2. Other USU games televised on ESPN/ESPN2 under Andersen include home games against Boise State (2009), BYU (2010) and Utah (2012), and road games at Auburn (2011) and BYU (2011), along with its bowl game against Ohio (2011).
EIGHTH AND FINAL YEAR IN THE WESTERN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE
Utah State is entering its eighth and final year as a member of the Western Athletic Conference as it will officially join the Mountain West Conference on July 1, 2013. In its first seven years in the WAC, USU has posted an 18-37 (.327) mark. Prior to joining the WAC, Utah State was a member of the Sun Belt Conference from 2003-04 and spent two years as a independent (2001-02). USU was also a member of the PCAA/Big West Conference (1978-2000), the Mountain States Conference/Skyline (1938-61), and the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (1916-37).
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State has had 66 players earn academic all-WAC honors and 84 players have graduated from Utah State University in Gary Andersen's first three years as head coach. In 2011, USU had a WAC-leading 18 academic all-conference honorees.
A LOOK AT UTAH STATE
Utah State is 4-1 on the year after defeating UNLV at home, 35-13, in its last outing. USU began the year by posting a 34-3 home win against Southern Utah, followed by a 27-20 overtime win at home against Utah, a 16-14 loss at No. 22 Wisconsin, and a 31-19 win at Colorado State. Offensively, USU is led by sophomore quarterback Chuckie Keeton who is 106-of-155 passing for 1,283 yards (256.6 ypg) with 11 touchdowns and four interceptions. Senior running back Kerwynn Williams leads the team in rushing with 519 yards on 89 carries (103.8 ypg) with three touchdowns, and Williams also leads the team with 18 catches for 262 yards (52.4 ypg) and two touchdowns. Defensively, senior safety McKade Brady leads the team with 39 tackles (10-solo, 29-assist), including 1.0 tackle for loss. Sophomore linebacker Zach Vigil also has 39 tackles (13-solo, 26-assist) with 6.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, one blocked kick and one fumble recovery. And junior linebacker Jake Doughty has 34 tackles (5-solo, 29-assist) with 1.0 tackle for loss to go along with one fumble recovery. As a team, Utah State is averaging 28.2 points and 454.2 yards of total offense per game (261.0-passing, 193.2-rushing) and allowing just 14.2 points and 280.8 yards of total offense (174.4-passing, 106.4-rushing).
UTAH STATE WINS FIFTH-STRAIGHT HOME GAME
With its 35-13 win against UNLV in its last outing, Utah State has now won five-straight home games which is its longest home winning streak since the 1981-82 seasons when those two teams combined for five-straight home wins. Overall, USU is now 13-7 at home under head coach Gary Andersen, which includes an 8-1 non-conference record.
UTAH STATE POSTS CONSECUTIVE DOUBLE-DIGIT WINS
After playing a stretch where nine of its 10 games where decided by a single score, Utah State has won each of its last two games by double-digits with victories at Colorado State (31-19) and against UNLV (35-13). The last time, USU had consecutive wins by 10 or more points was in 2003 when it defeated Arkansas State (49-0) and Middle Tennessee (41-20) in back-to-back home games.
UTAH STATE SCORES SEASON-HIGH 35 POINTS AGAINST UNLV
Utah State scored a season-high 35 points in its last game against UNLV, which is its most points since posting a 49-42 double overtime win at Idaho in 2011. USU also had 564 yards of total offense against the Rebels (426-passing, 138-rushing), which is the second-most this year (569 vs. Southern Utah) and the 17th-most in school history. Furthermore, those 426 passing yards rank as the eighth-most in school history and the most since passing for 442 yards against Middle Tennessee in 2002.
UTAH STATE DEFENSE HOLDS ANOTHER OPPONENT UNDER 20 POINTS
For the third-straight game and fourth time this season, Utah State held an opponent under 20 points as it defeated UNLV, 35-13. The last time USU held three-straight opponents to less than 20 points was during the 1991 season, and the last time USU began a season by allowing less than 21 points in each of its first five games was 1962 when that team held its first six opponents to 20 or fewer points.
UTAH STATE DEFENSE NOTCHES SAFETY AGAINST UNLV
Utah State recorded its second safety in as many years in its last game against UNLV as junior linebacker Jake Doughty and redshirt freshman linebacker Kyler Fackrell tackled the Rebels Tim Cornett in the end zone. The last time USU had a safety was in the first quarter of its bowl game against Ohio in 2011.
UTAH STATE HAS PAIR OF 100-YARD RECEIVERS AGAINST UNLV
Utah State had two players with 100 yards receiving in its last game against UNLV as senior running back Kerwynn Williams caught a career-high seven passes for a career-best 147 yards with one touchdown, while senior wide receiver Chuck Jacobs caught four passes for a career-high 101 yards to go along with a career-high two touchdowns. The last time USU had a pair of 100-yard receivers was on Nov. 30, 2002 at Middle Tennessee when wide receiver Kevin Curtis had 13 receptions for 177 yards and tight end Chris Cooley had five catches for 105 yards.
UTAH STATE HAS TRAILED JUST TWICE THIS SEASON
Through five games and 300 minutes of play this season, Utah State has led or been tied for all but 21:27 (92.85 %). USU began the season by never trailing against Southern Utah in a 34-3 win, and never trailed in its 27-20 overtime win against Utah. Against Wisconsin, USU led for the first 41:54 of that game before the Badgers scored late in the third quarter and neither team scored in the fourth quarter. USU then led for the entire game against Colorado State and trailed for just 3:21 during the second quarter in its last game against UNLV.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State has eight players on its team who are married (McKade Brady, Clayton Christensen, Nate Needham, Joe Summers, Brad Theurer, Josh Thompson, Kevin Whimpey, Kyle Whimpey), while 16 Aggies have served a two-year LDS Church Mission (Eric Bernston, Clayton Christensen, Jefferson Court, Derek Keller, B.J. Larsen, Jason Luke, Logan Malohifo'ou, Jeff Manning, Alex Marsaw, Nate Needham, Travis Parrish, Eric Schultz, Brad Theurer, Cameron Webb, Kevin Whimpey and Kyle Whimpey).
UTAH STATE'S OFFENSE ROLLING DURING ITS LAST TWO GAMES
During its last two games in wins against Colorado State (31-19) and UNLV (35-13), Utah State has averaged 33.0 points and 502.0 yards of total offense per game (302.0-passing, 200.0-rushing), which translates to 7.1 yards per play. USU has also averaged 22.5 first downs during its last two games, while converting 54.8 percent of its third downs (17-31). During its last two games, senior running back Kerwynn Williams is averaging 159.0 rushing yards per game and 7.8 yards per carry as he has gained 318 yards on 41 attempts. Sophomore quarterback Chuckie Keeton is 44-of-64 passing during his last two games for 582 yards (291.0 ypg) with five touchdowns.
KEETON NAMED WAC OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK AFTER CAREER-HIGH 404 PASSING YARDS
Sophomore quarterback Chuckie Keeton was named the Western Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Week for his performance in leading Utah State to a 35-13 Homecoming win against UNLV Saturday night. Keeton completed 21-of-34 passes for a career-high 404 yards against the Rebels, as those 34 pass attempts ties his career-high. Keeton also had four touchdown passes in the game, the second-most of his career, to go along with four rushing yards on six carries. The 404 passing yards for Keeton rank as the 10th-most in school history and the most by an Aggie quarterback since 2002. Keeton also received honorable mention honors from College Football Performance Awards following the UNLV game and was named College Sports Madness' WAC Offensive Player of the Week as well. For Keeton, it is the second time this year and third time in his career he has received the WAC's top offensive honor.
WILLIAMS HAS CAREER NIGHT AGAINST UNLV
Senior running back Kerwynn Williams had a career night in his last outing against UNLV as he had a career-high seven catches for a career-high 147 yards, including a 74-yard touchdown reception, which is a career-long and the longest play from scrimmage for USU this year. The 147 receiving yards for Williams is the most by an Aggie since Kevin Curtis caught 13 passes for 177 yards against Middle Tennessee in 2002 and the most by a non-receiver since running back Tom Larscheid had 172 receiving yards on three receptions against Hawai`i in 1959. Williams also rushed for 113 yards against the Rebels on 20 carries to become the first Utah State player to have 100 yards rushing and receiving in the same game since Robert Turbin rushed for 104 yards on 17 carries and added 116 receiving yards on four receptions against Southern Utah in 2009. For Williams, it is his second-straight 100-yard rushing game and the third of his career, to go along with his first-ever 100-yard receiving game.
BENNETT NAMED COLLEGE FOOTBALL PERFORMANCE NATIONAL PUNTER OF THE WEEK
Senior punter Tyler Bennett had one of his best games of his career against UNLV in his last outing as he punted five times for an average of 47.4 yards per kick. Bennett finished the game with two punts of 50-plus yards and had all five of his punts downed inside the 20-yardline, which is a career-high.
FORMER WALK-ONS PAYING DIVIDENDS AT UTAH STATE
Utah State has had great success with its walk-on program under current head coach Gary Andersen including a pair of middle linebackers who are now starting in junior Jake Doughty and sophomore Zach Vigil. Other former walk-ons who have started this season include senior safety McKade Brady, senior wide receiver Cameron Webb and sophomore safety Frankie Sutera. Other former walk-ons who have made contributions this year include junior defensive lineman B.J. Larsen and redshirt freshman defensive lineman Jordan Nielsen, along with junior placekicker Josh Thompson.
PLAYER NOTABLES AGAINST UNLV
Senior wide receiver Chuck Jacobs' 50-yard touchdown pass was a career long as part of his career-high 101 receiving yards for his first-career 100-yard receiving game. Jacobs also had two touchdown receptions to give him three on the season and five in his career. Sophomore running back Joe Hill had a career-high three receptions for a career-high 88 yards, which included a career-long 65-yard reception. Senior tight end D.J. Tialavea caught his first touchdown reception of the season and the second of his career. His two receptions were also the first of the season and tied his career-high. Freshman wide receiver Bruce Natson had a career-long reception of 22 yards from sophomore quarterback Craig Harrison, which was his first-career completion. Junior linebacker Jake Doughty had a career-high 13 tackles. Redshirt freshman linebacker Zach Vigil tied his career-high with 10 tackles. Sophomore safety Frankie Sutera had a career-high five tackles. Junior defensive lineman A.J. Pataiali`i had a career-high four tackles. Redshirt freshman defensive lineman Travis Seefeldt had a career-high three tackles. Junior defensive lineman B.J. Larsen recorded his first-career sack. Senior cornerback Terrence Alston recorded his first career interception. Junior placekicker Josh Thompson tied his career-high with two made field goals (32, 31).
DID YOU KNOW?
Junior defensive lineman Connor Williams (Kanata, Ontario) is one of 46 Canadians currently on Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) rosters.
UTAH STATE'S DEFENSE RANKS AS ONE OF THE BEST IN THE NATION
As of Sept. 30, Utah State's defense ranks second in the WAC and 11th in the nation in total defense (280.8 ypg). USU also leads the WAC and ranks 13th in the nation in pass efficiency defense (99.2), ranks first in the WAC and 15th in the nation in passing defense (174.4 ypg), ranks first in the WAC and 18th in the nation in scoring defense (14.2 ppg), ranks second in the WAC and 22nd in the nation in rushing defense (106.4 ypg), and is second in the WAC and 22nd in the nation in sacks per game (2.8).
UTAH STATE'S DEFENSE RANKS NINTH IN THE NATION IN THIRD DOWN EFFICIENCY
Utah State's defense is allowing its opponents to convert just 27.1 percent of its third downs (23-85) which leads the WAC and ranks ninth in the nation. USU's defense is also allowing just 16.00 first downs per game to lead the WAC and rank 16th in the nation.
UTAH STATE'S DEFENSE RANKS TIED FOR 18TH IN THE NATION IN REDZONE EFFICIENCY
Utah State's defense has done a great job of not allowing teams to score once it enters the redzone as USU's opponents are 9-of-13 (.692) inside the 20 this season to rank tied for 18th in the nation. Of those 13 trips USU's opponents have made to the redzone, they have come away with just three touchdowns and six field goals, to go along with one missed field goal, one fumble, one interception and a loss on downs.
UTAH STATE RANKS SECOND IN THE WAC IN RUSHING OFFENSE
As of Sept. 30, Utah State ranks second in the WAC and 40th in the nation in rushing offense (193.2 ypg) and second in the WAC and 40th in the nation in total offense (454.2 ypg). USU also ranks fourth in the WAC and 26th in the nation in passing efficiency (155.9), fourth in the WAC and 45th in the nation in passing offense (261.0 ypg), and fourth in the WAC and 60th in the nation in scoring offense (28.2 ppg). USU also ranks fourth in the WAC and 50th in the nation in sacks allowed per game (1.6).
UTAH STATE RANKS 55TH IN THE NATION IN PUNTING
As of Sept. 30, Utah State ranks third in the WAC and 39th in the nation in punt returns (10.9 ypr), fourth in the WAC and 35th in the nation in kickoff returns (23.9 ypr), and fifth in the WAC and 55th in the nation in net punting (37.6 ypk).
UTAH STATE PLAYERS IN THE WAC AND NATIONAL RANKINGS
As of Sept. 30, senior running back Kerwynn Williams ranks first in the WAC and 20th in the nation in all-purpose yards (156.2 ypg), second in the WAC and 23rd in the nation in rushing (103.8 ypg), eighth in the WAC in receiving (52.4 ypg), ninth in the WAC in scoring (6.0 ppg), and ninth in the WAC in total offense (103.8 ypg). Sophomore quarterback Chuckie Keeton ranks first in the WAC and 27th in the nation in total offense (297.4 ypg), fifth in the WAC and 26th in the nation in passing efficiency (156.4), fourth in the WAC and 37th in the nation in passing (256.2 ypg), and eighth in the WAC in rushing (41.2 ypg). Sophomore running back Joe Hill ranks ninth in the WAC in scoring (6.0 ppg). Senior wide receiver Matt Austin ranks 10th in the WAC in receiving (47.6 ypg). Senior wide receiver Cameron Webb ranks third in the WAC and 57th in the nation in punt returns (7.3 ypr). Junior cornerback Devonta Glover-Wright ranks eighth in the WAC and tied for 81st in the nation in kickoff returns (19.8 ypr). Senior punter Tyler Bennett ranks fourth in the WAC and 31st in the nation in punting (43.4 ypk). Junior placekicker Josh Thompson ranks sixth in the WAC and tied for 85th in the nation in field goals (0.75 pg). Senior safety McKade Brady ranks seventh in the WAC in tackles (7.8 pg). Sophomore linebacker Zach Vigil ranks tied for third in the WAC and tied for 52nd in the nation in tackles for loss (1.30 pg), tied for fifth in the WAC and tied for 72nd in the nation in sacks (0.60 pg), and seventh in the WAC in tackles (7.8 pg). Senior linebacker Bojay Filimoeatu ranks tied for ninth in the WAC in tackles for loss (0.90 pg) and 19th in tackles (6.4 pg). Junior linebacker Jake Doughty ranks 16th in the WAC in tackles (6.8 pg). Sophomore safety Brian Suite ranks tied for 17th in the WAC in tackles (6.6 pg). Redshirt freshman linebacker Kyler Fackrell ranks 36th in the WAC in tackles (5.2 pg). Junior cornerback Nevin Lawson ranks 37th in the WAC in tackles (5.0 pg). Senior cornerback Will Davis ranks first in the WAC in passes defended (2.0 pg), and fellow senior cornerback Terrence Alston ranks tied for fifth in the WAC in passes defended (1.20 pg).
FIRST TIME STARTERS IN 2012
Five games into the 2012 season, Utah State has had 11 players make their first career starts at the Division I level. Against Southern Utah, freshman placekicker Brock Warren; senior defensive lineman Havea Lasike; junior offensive guard Kyle Whimpey; junior linebacker Zach Vigil; sophomore safety Frankie Sutera; and redshirt freshman linebacker Kyler Fackrell all started for the first time. Against Utah, sophomore offensive tackle Kevin Whimpey, sophomore running back Joe Hill and sophomore safety Brian Suite all made their first career starts. At Wisconsin, sophomore defensive lineman Elvis Kamana-Matagi made his first career start. And at Colorado State, senior wide receiver Cameron Webb made his first career start.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State has had a player rush for at least 100 yards 24 times in the last three-plus years under current head coach Gary Andersen. Prior to that, USU produced a 100-yard rusher 23 times in the previous eight seasons combined. Furthermore, USU has had a player rush for 200 or more yards twice in the past two seasons, but just once in the previous 10 seasons combined.
KEETON RANKS FIRST ALL-TIME AT UTAH STATE IN COMPLETION PERCENTAGE
Sophomore quarterback Chuckie Keeton is 212-of-329 passing during his brief Utah State career with a completion percentage of 64.3 percent, which ranks first all-time in school history. Keith Myers (1976-77) entered the 2011 season as the school record holder at 60.7 percent. Thus far in 2012, Keeton is completing 68.2 percent of his passes (106-155), which would rank second all-time at USU for a single-season Adam Kennedy's mark last year (.691).
BENNETT RANKS FIRST ALL-TIME AT UTAH STATE IN PUNTING
Senior Tyler Bennett has a career punt average of 43.7 yards on 87 punts (3,802), which ranks first all-time in school history. In 2012, Bennett has punted 29 times for an average of 43.4 yards. He has also had six punts of 50-plus yards, while 15 have been downed inside the 20-yardline.
Kerwynn Williams RANKS FIFTH ALL-TIME AT UTAH STATE IN ALL-PURPOSE YARDAGE
Senior running back Kerwynn Williams had 260 all-purpose yards in his last game against UNLV and now has 4,173 all-purpose yards in his career to rank fifth in school history. Williams is now 1,030 yards shy of tying Louie Giammona (1973-75) for fourth-place with 5,203 all-purpose yards.
THOMPSON SETS SCHOOL RECORDS IN KICKING IN 2011
Junior placekicker Josh Thompson set new Utah State single-season extra point records in 2011 with 57 makes in 58 attempts. Thompson also ranked fifth in school history in extra point percentage (.983). All-time, Thompson ranks fourth at USU in extra point percentage (.971), tied for fifth in extra points made (68) and sixth in extra points attempted (70).
WILLIAMS' 205 RUSHING YARDS AGAINST COLORADO STATE AMONG BEST IN SCHOOL HISTORY
Senior running back Kerwynn Williams had one of the best rushing days in school history against Colorado State as his 205 rushing yards on 21 carries ranks tied for the 22nd-best single-game rushing performance in school history and the best since Robert Turbin rushed for 208 yards at Idaho in 2011. Overall, Williams had 227 yards of total offense as he rushed for 205 yards on 21 carries with two touchdowns, all career-highs, and added three receptions for 22 yards. Williams had touchdown runs of 26 and 58 yards in the game, with the 58-yarder being a career-long.
UTAH STATE WINS FIRST NON-CONFERENCE ROAD GAME SINCE 2004
Utah State's 31-19 road win at Colorado State was its fourth road win in its last five outings dating back to 2011, but it was the Aggies first non-conference road win dating back to Sept. 25, 2004 when it won at UNLV, 31-21. Since that win in Las Vegas, USU had lost 19 straight non-conference road games. Furthermore, USU's 12-point road win was its largest since it won at New Mexico State by 18 points (35-17) on Nov. 17, 2007.
AGGIES IN OVERTIME
With its 27-20 overtime win against Utah on Sept. 7, Utah State improved to 5-4 all-time in overtime, including winning each of its last two as it won a double-overtime game at Idaho (49-42) in 2011. Under Andersen, USU is 2-1 in overtime games with wins against Utah (27-20 OT) and at Idaho (49-42 2OT), and a loss to Colorado State (35-34 2OT). All-time, USU is 3-2 in single-overtime games, 2-1 in double-overtime games, and 0-1 in triple overtime games.
UTAH STATE RETURNS EXPERIENCED OFFENSIVE LINE
Utah State returns a great deal of starting experience on the offensive line highlighted by first-team all-WAC junior center Tyler Larsen (6-4, 312), and senior offensive tackles Eric Schultz (6-4, 303) and Oscar Molina-Sanchez (6-5, 299) who have 75 combined starts between the three of them, including a combined 68 consecutive starts, as Larsen has made all of his 30 starts in a row, while Schultz has 24 straight starts and Molina-Sanchez had 14 consecutive starts in a row before missing the last three games. Overall, Molina-Sanchez has 21 total starts.
YOUNG AGGIES GAINING EXPERIENCE
Of the 66 players that saw action for Utah State in its season opener against Southern Utah, 26 were underclassmen including four true freshmen (K. Lee, L. Malohifo'ou, B. Natson, B. Warren), seven redshirt freshmen (K. Fackrell, T. Fisilau, L. Harold, D. Keller, J. Nielsen, T. Seefeldt, B. Swindall), and 15 sophomores (K. Andersen, J. Bentrude, C. Harrison, J. Haueter, J. Hill, J. Jenkins, E. Kamana-Matagi, C. Keeton, T. McMillian, N. Needham, R. Stewart, B. Suite, F. Sutera, A. Wheat, Jr., Kevin Whimpey). Furthermore, of the 66 players that Utah State played in its season opener against Southern Utah, 22 were playing in their first-ever Division I game, while 11 were playing in their first-ever collegiate game.
AGGIES IN THE NFL
Utah State has eight former football players who are on NFL rosters for the 2012 season including Diondre Borel (Green Bay), Jarrett Bush (Green Bay), John Chick (Jacksonville), Curtis Marsh (Philadelphia), Donald Penn (Tampa Bay), Michael Smith (Tampa Bay), Robert Turbin (Seattle) and Bobby Wagner (Seattle).
THREE AGGIES SELECTED IN 2012 NFL DRAFT
Utah State had three players selected in the 2012 NFL Draft as linebacker Bobby Wagner was chosen in the second round (47) by the Seattle Seahawks, while running back Robert Turbin was chosen in the fourth round (106) by the Seattle Seahawks and fellow running back Michael Smith was picked in the seventh round (212) by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
UTAH STATE WEEKLY PLAYER HONORS Sept. 10 (W, 27-20 OT vs. Utah) Tyler Bennett - WAC Special Teams Player of the Week. Chuckie Keeton - WAC Offensive Player of the Week; Davey O'Brien honorable mention national Quarterback of the Week. Bojay Filimoeatu - College Football Performance Awards honorable mention national Linebacker of the Week. Sept. 17 (L, 14-16 at No. 22 Wisconsin) Zach Vigil - College Football Performance Awards honorable mention national Linebacker of the Week. Kerwynn Williams - College Football Performance Awards honorable mention national All-Purpose Performer of the Week. Sept. 24 (W, 31-19 at Colorado State) Tyler Bennett - College Football Performance Awards honorable mention national Punter of the Week. Zach Vigil - College Sports Madness' WAC Defensive Player of the Week; College Football Performance Awards honorable mention national Linebacker of the Week. Kerwynn Williams - WAC Offensive Player of the Week; College Football Performance Awards honorable mention national Running Back of the Week. Oct. 1 (W, 35-13 vs. UNLV) Tyler Bennett - College Football Performance Awards national Punter of the Week. Chuckie Keeton - WAC Offensive Player of the Week; College Sports Madness' WAC Offensive Player of the Week. Kerwynn Williams - College Football Performance Awards honorable mention national All-Purpose Performer of the Week.AGGIE UNIFORM OPTIONS IN 2012
Utah State will have nine different jersey and pant combinations, manufactured by Nike, to go along with two different helmet options for a total of 18 different uniform combinations for the 2012 season. Along with its traditional blue and white uniforms, a new pewter grey uniform will be utilized this season. Two helmet options are also available including a new diamond pattern blue and black helmet with a black face mask, along with its traditional white helmet with a blue face mask. Home uniform options feature a traditional combination of blue jersey with blue or white pants, as well as an option of blue jersey and pewter pants. Road uniform combinations can be built around the newly-designed pewter jersey or the traditional white jersey. The road pewter jerseys can be combined with pewter, blue or white pants, while white jerseys can be worn with white, blue or pewter pants. Both helmet options will also be utilized with the various uniform combinations for both home and away games. GAME ONE (H) - Blue Jersey, Blue Pants, Blue Helmet
GAME TWO (H) - Blue Jersey, Pewter Pants, Blue Helmet
GAME THREE (A) - Pewter Jersey, Blue Pants, Blue Helmet
GAME FOUR (A) - Pewter Jersey, Pewter Pants, Blue Helmet
GAME FIVE (H) - White Jersey, White Pants, White Helmet
PRESEASON NATIONAL WATCH LISTS
The following is a list of current Utah State players who are listed among various watch lists for the National College Football Awards Association.
Davey O'Brien Award Chuckie Keeton (So., QB) Doak Walker Award Kerwynn Williams (Sr., RB) Lombardi Award Tyler Larsen (Jr., C) Outland Trophy Tyler Larsen (Jr., C) Rimington Trophy Tyler Larsen (Jr., C) Ray Guy Award Tyler Bennett (Sr., P)A LOOK AT BYU
BYU is 3-2 on the season following its 47-0 home win against Hawai'i last weekend. The Cougars began the year with home wins against Washington State (30-6) and Weber State (45-13), followed by road losses at Utah (24-21) and Boise State (7-6). Offensively, BYU is led by senior quarterback Riley Nelson who is 64-of-109 passing for 754 yards (188.5 ypg) with five touchdowns and five interceptions. Freshman quarterback Taysom Hill leads the team in rushing with 256 yards on 36 carries (51.2 ypg), and junior wide receiver Cody Hoffman has 23 catches for 318 yards (63.6 ypg) with two touchdowns. Defensively, senior linebacker Brand Ogletree leads the team with 42 tackles (21-solo, 21-assist), while junior defensive back Daniel Sorensen has 27 tackles (18-solo, 9-assist). As a team, BYU is averaging 29.8 points and 402.0 yards of total offense per game (204.2-passing, 197.8-rushing) and allowing 10.0 points and 226.6 yards of total offense per game (163.4-passing, 63.2-rushing). Overall, BYU returns 19 starters (O-7, D-7, S-5) and 55 lettermen from last year's team that went 10-3 and defeated Tulsa, 24-21, in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl. Bronco Mendenhall is 69-26 in his eighth year as the Cougars head coach.
AGGIES AND COUGARS
Utah State trails in the all-time series against BYU, 34-44-3, including a 16-26-1 record in Provo. The first game played in the series was on Oct. 7, 1922 in Provo with USU winning, 42-3. BYU won the last game played in the series, 27-24, on Sept. 30, 2011 in Provo, while USU won the last game played between the two teams in Logan, 31-16, on Oct. 1, 2010. Overall, USU has lost 16 straight road games against BYU with its last road win in the series occurring on Oct. 7, 1978 by a final score of 24-7.
TOP AGGIE PERFORMERS VERSUS BYU
Rushing Yards: Roy Shivers (1965), 180
Passing Yards: Anthony Cavillo (1993), 472
Receiving Yards: Aaron Jones (1999), 195
UTAH STATE AND BYU TO PLAY UNDER FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS AGAIN
For the fifth-straight year, Utah State and BYU will be playing one another on Friday night under the lights and for the 15th time in its last 19 meetings dating back to 1987.
UTAH STATE VERSUS FBS INDEPENDENTS
Utah State is 34-44-3 all-time against current Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) Independents with a 34-44-3 record against BYU and a 1-0 record against Army, a game that was played in 1969.
Gary Andersen VERSUS BYU
Gary Andersen is 1-2 against BYU as Utah State's head coach, losing at No. 20 BYU in 2009 (35-17), defeating BYU at home in 2010 (31-16), and losing at BYU in 2011 (27-24). Andersen was also 0-2 against BYU as a player at Utah in 1985-86, and 6-5 against the Cougars as an assistant coach at Utah from 1997-2002, 2004-08.
UTAH STATE-BYU CONNECTIONS
Utah State senior free safety McKade Brady spent the 2008-09 academic year as a member of BYU's track program helping the Cougars to the 2009 Mountain West Indoor and Outdoor Championships. At BYU, Brady competed in the 200m and 400m, and was a member of the 4x400m relay team. Brady also earned academic all-Mountain honors that year. BYU senior quarterback Riley Nelson spent the 2006 season at Utah State, playing in eight games and starting the final seven as a freshman. BYU's stadium namesake LaVell Edwards, is a 1952 Utah State alum, and was a three-year letterman for the Aggies from 1949-51, collecting unanimous all-Skyline Six Conference honors in 1950 at linebacker. Edwards was inducted into USU Athletics' Hall of Fame in 2011.
MORE UTAH STATE-BYU CONNECTIONS
Utah State University President Stan Albrecht was at BYU for 18 years (1974-92), including three years as academic vice president and associate provost. BYU inside linebacker coach Paul Tidwell's hometown is Logan and he played fullback at USU from 1974-76. BYU defensive graduate assistant Jason Walker played defensive back at USU in 2004. And BYU outside linebackers coach Kelly Poppinga was a USU linebacker from 2003-04.
ALL-TIME VERSUS BYU
Utah State's 34 wins against BYU are the second-most in school history behind USU's 35 wins against Wyoming. The USU-BYU series is the second-most played in school history as this weekends 82nd meeting trails only USU's 110 games played against Utah. USU and BYU began their series in 1922 and have played every year except 1943, 1944, 1945, 1995, 1998, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2007.
DID YOU KNOW?
Redshirt freshman defensive lineman Travis Seefeldt (Sun City, Ariz.) turns 20 years old on Friday, Oct. 5, the same day USU plays at BYU.
LAST MEETING AGAINST BYU - (BYU 27, USU 24)
September 30, 2011 Provo, Utah LaVell Edwards Stadium
Robert Turbin rushed for 123 yards including an 80-yard touchdown burst on the first offensive play of the game, but BYU scored the final 14 points, including the winning touchdown with 11 seconds remaining as the Cougars rallied for a 27-24 win against Utah State at LaVell Edwards Stadium on Sept. 30. Utah State, who has now lost three games in the waning seconds, falls to 1-3 on the season with the loss, while BYU improves to 3-2 with the win. Leading 14-13 at halftime, Utah State scored on its first possession of the second-half as freshman quarterback Chuckie Keeton hit Turbin on a screen pass that resulted in a 24-yard touchdown capping off a 12-play, 89-yard drive that took 4:49 off the clock. USU later added a 21-yard field goal from sophomore placekicker Josh Thompson early on in the fourth quarter to give the visitors their largest lead of the game at 24-13 with 12:43 remaining. BYU answered with an 8-play, 60-yard drive that concluded with a 24-yard touchdown strike from Riley Nelson to Cody Hoffman to cut the deficit to 24-20 with 10:05 to play in the game. After Utah State failed on a fake field goal attempt on its next possession, BYU drove inside the USU 30-yard line before senior safety Chris Harris forced and recovered a JJ DiLuigi fumble. Utah State could not pick up a first down on its next series but received a 67-yard punt from junior Tyler Bennett that was downed at the four-yard line. With 2:36 to play, BYU drove 96 yards in nine plays that culminated with a 13-yard touchdown pass from Nelson to Marcus Mathews with 11 seconds remaining to cement the comeback. On its final drive, Nelson completed a 40-yard pass that moved the ball from the BYU 34 to the USU 26. Utah State finished the game with 294 yards rushing as part of its 406 yards of total offense. BYU amassed 451 yards (200-rushing, 251-passing), including 198 yards in the final quarter. BYU also won the time of possession battle, 34:13 to 25:47, and had 11 more first downs (29-18). Keeton finished the game 13-of-25 passing for 122 yards including two touchdowns, while senior tight end Tarren Lloyd caught a team-best three passes for 24 yards. Turbin also had two catches for 22-yards on the night, including his 24-yard score. Senior running back Michael Smith had another productive night for the Aggies as he carried the ball nine times for 85 yards, including a 53-yard scamper in the fourth quarter. Senior linebacker Bobby Wagner had a game-high 11 tackles and senior safety Walter McClenton added nine stops. After Utah State's initial touchdown in the first quarter, BYU scored 10-straight points and held the lead until late in the second half when Keeton hit senior wide receiver Eric Moats for a 13-yard strike to cap off a 13-play, 78-yard drive that took 4:01 off the clock. BYU ended the scoring in the first half with a 29-yard field goal to make the score 14-13 at intermission.
RECAPPING THE UNLV GAME
Career nights from senior running back Kerwynn Williams and sophomore quarterback Chuckie Keeton led Utah State to a 35-13 Homecoming win against UNLV. With the win, the Aggies improve to 4-1 on the year, their best start since 1978, by amassing 564 total yards, the second-most this season and 17th-most in school history.
With career-highs of seven catches for 147 yards with one score, Williams amassed the most receiving yards by a non-receiver since running back Tom Larscheid had 172 receiving yards in 1959. Williams added 20 rushes for 113 yards to also became the first USU player with 100 yards rushing and 100 yards receiving in the same game since Robert Turbin with 116 yards receiving and 104 rushing against Southern Utah in 2009.
Keeton threw for a career-best 404 yards on 21-of-34 passing with four touchdowns, one to Williams for 74 yards. The 404 passing yards is the 10th-most in school history and the most since Jose Fuentes threw for 426 against Middle Tennessee in 2002.
Two of Keeton's touchdown tosses went to senior wide receiver Chuck Jacobs, who finished with four receptions for a career-high 101 yards, scoring on a 50-yard pass play and a 17-yard catch. The 100-yard receiving tandem of Williams and Jacobs are the first pair of Aggies with 100-yards receiving since 2002 when Chris Cooley (5-105) and Kevin Curtis (13-177) accomplished the feat against Middle Tennessee.
Utah State ended the night with 426 yards passing, which is the eighth-best mark in school history and the most since throwing for 442 yards against Middle Tennessee in 2002.
The stout Aggie defense was led by the linebacker tandem of junior Jake Doughty and sophomore Zach Vigil, as Doughty had a career-high 13 tackles and Vigil tied his career-high with 10, while senior cornerback Terrence Alston recorded his first-career interception.
The Rebels had 188 yards passing and 117 yards rushing for 305 total yards.
After USU's defense pitched its fifth-straight first quarter shutout, the Aggies got on the board first with a 32-yard field goal from sophomore placekicker Josh Thompson just 44 seconds into the second quarter for a 3-0 Aggie advantage. UNLV countered on its ensuing drive with a 3-yard scoring pass for the Aggies' first touchdown yielded in the first half and a 7-3 Rebels' lead, only the second time this season that USU has trailed.
The Aggies responded by marching down the field, with Keeton capping the drive with a 1-yard toss to junior tight end D.J. Tialavea. After the USU defense forced a three-and-out, the home team took over at midfield and on the second play, Keeton hit Jacobs down the middle for a 50-yard catch and run for a 17-7 lead.
With 31 ticks on the clock, USU took over at its own 18 and four plays later, Thompson split the uprights from 31-yards out for a 20-7 USU lead at the half.
Utah State fumbled on their first play in the second half at their own 22, but the Aggie defense held strong, forcing a UNLV field goal for a 20-10 deficit. The Rebels added another third-quarter field goal to make the score 20-13.
The Aggies started the fourth quarter scoring on Williams' 74-yard scoring pass play from Keeton. On USU's next possession, Keeton hit Jacobs across the middle in the end zone for a 17-yard toss to put the Aggies ahead, 33-13 with 10:47 remaining in the game. Fackrell and Doughty's safety capped the scored with 5:10 to go.
HEAD COACH Gary Andersen
Gary Andersen was named Utah State's 26th head coach on Dec. 4, 2008, and since that day Andersen and his staff have worked non-stop to create a culture of accountability and responsibility that would translate into success both on and off the field. And in 2011, Aggie fans saw that plan pay dividends as USU produced a 7-6 record (5-2 Western Athletic Conference) and participated in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, the school's first bowl game since 1997.
In his first three years at Utah State, Andersen has compiled a 15-22 (.407) record including a 10-13 (.435) WAC mark as those 15 wins are the most by an Aggie coach in his first three years since John L. Smith went 16-18 (.471) from 1995-97. Furthermore, Andersen has coached 10 players who have earned first or second team all-WAC honors and six players who are currently on NFL rosters, including Michael Smith, Robert Turbin and Bobby Wagner who were all selected in the 2012 NFL Draft. That trio of Aggies drafted in 2012 is the most selections in one year since five USU players were chosen in 1980. Wagner, who was drafted in the second round (47) by the Seattle Seahawks, becomes the highest drafted Aggie since Rulon Jones was the 42nd overall pick in the second round in 1980 by the Denver Broncos.
Along with playing in its first bowl game in over a decade during the 2011 season, Utah State's seven overall wins and five league victories were its most since 1993, while its second-place conference finish was its best since the 2000 team ended the year second in the Big West. Furthermore, those five league wins in 2011 were tied with five other teams (1953, 1960, 1990, 1991, 1993) for the most in school history, while its seven overall wins are tied for the 10th most all-time at Utah State.
Utah State also won its final five games of the regular season in 2011, which is tied for the eighth-longest winning streak in school history and the longest since the 1993 squad won its final six games of the year. USU's three-win turnaround from four wins in 2010 to seven wins in 2011 was among the top 15 in the Football Bowl Subdivision for the year.
During the 2011 season, Andersen's high-octane spread offense was statistically one of the best in the country as it led the WAC and ranked sixth in the nation in rushing offense (282.69 ypg). USU also ranked first in the WAC and 18th in the nation in passing efficiency (151.8), first in the WAC and 23rd in the nation in scoring offense (33.62 ppg), second in the WAC and 20th in the nation in total offense (457.31 ypg), and second in the WAC and 33rd in the nation in fewest sacks allowed per game (1.38 pg).
In 2011, Utah State also established school records for total offense (5,945 yards), rushing yards (3,675), total points (437) and total touchdowns (60).
Highlighting Utah State's offense in 2011 was junior running back Robert Turbin who ended the season as the WAC's Offensive Player of the Year, USU's first in its six years in the league, and just its second such offensive award in school history. During the season, Turbin ranked first in the WAC and eighth in the nation in scoring (10.62 ppg), second in the WAC and 13th in the nation in rushing (116.69 ypg), and sixth in the WAC and 40th in the nation in all-purpose yardage (129.85 ypg). He ended the year setting single-season school records for rushing touchdowns (19), total touchdowns (23) and points scored (138), while his 1,517 rushing yards rank third all-time at USU for a single-season.
Turbin, who was drafted in the fourth round (106) of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks, ended his Aggie career ranking first in both total touchdowns (51) and points scored (308), while his 3,315 career rushing yards ranks fifth all-time in school history.
Andersen's defense was also formidable during the 2011 season as it ended the year ranking first in the WAC and 50th in the nation in total defense (366.23), second in the WAC and 31st in the nation in rushing defense (127.70 ypg), second in the WAC and 53rd nationally in tackles for loss (5.92 pg), third in the WAC and 48th in the nation in pass efficiency defense (125.58), and third in the WAC and 59th in the nation in sacks (1.92 pg).
Utah State's top defensive player in 2011 was Wagner who earned first-team all-WAC honors after ranking first in the league and eighth nationally with 11.31 tackles per game. Wagner, who is one of just eight players in school history to be a three-time first-team all-conference selection, ended his career with 446 career tackles to rank first all-time in WAC and tied for first all-time in school history.
Along with all of his Utah State accolades, Wagner also received some national exposure after being named the Most Valuable Player of the 2012 Senior Bowl, leading the North to a 23-13 win. Smith was also recognized for his performance in the Players Classic All-Star Game as he was named the North's Offensive MVP.
Other Aggies to earn first-team all-WAC honors under Andersen's tutelage include offensive linemen Philip Gapelu (2011) and Tyler Larsen (2011), while those who have been named to the league's second-team include defensive end Levi Koskan (2011), tight end Tarren Lloyd (2011), defensive back Curtis Marsh (2010) and Turbin (2009).
Along with all of Utah State's success on the field under Andersen, there has been just as much success in the classroom as 66 Aggies have earned academic all-WAC honors, while another 84 have graduated from the University. Furthermore, Utah State had 18 football players earn academic all-WAC honorees this past year to rank first in the conference.
Andersen came to Utah State after five seasons as the assistant head coach, defensive coordinator and defensive line coach at Utah, where he helped guide the Utes to a 13-0 record in 2008. Utah finished the season ranked No. 2 in the Associated Press poll after winning the BCS Sugar Bowl with a dominating 31-17 victory against Alabama.
In 2008, Andersen was named a finalist for the Broyles Award, honoring the top assistant coach in college football. He was also named a Rivals.com top 10 non-BCS recruiter in 2008 and tabbed as the No. 1 non-BCS recruiter by Rivals.com in 2005.
Overall, Andersen spent 11 seasons as an assistant coach at Utah after coaching for the Utes from 1997-2002 before becoming the head coach at Southern Utah in 2003 and then returning to Utah in 2004. During his tenure at Utah, Andersen was a part of seven winning bowl teams, including two BCS Bowls as Utah went 12-0 in 2004 and won the Fiesta Bowl, along with its perfect record and Sugar Bowl win in 2008.
During his tenure at Utah, Andersen coached 14 first-team all-conference players (three in 2008), including two Mountain West Conference Defensive Players of the Year in John Frank (1999) and Eric Weddle (2005 and 2006), as well as a consensus All-American in Weddle in 2006. Andersen also coached 10 Ute players drafted in the NFL in Richard Seals, John Frank, Lauvale Sape, Sione Pouha, Jonathan Fanene, Eric Weddle, Paul Soliai, Sean Smith, Brice McCain and Paul Kruger, in addition to several other players who made NFL rosters as free agents.
Andersen's coaching career began in 1988 as the assistant head coach and offensive coordinator at Southeastern Louisiana, where he coached for one season before going to Ricks College (now BYU-Idaho) from 1989-92 as the offensive line coach. His other coaching stints include Idaho State (1992-94, defensive line), Park City HS (1994-95, head coach) and Northern Arizona (1995-96, assistant head coach/defensive line/special teams).
A 1986 graduate of Utah, Andersen earned his bachelor's degree in political science. He played center for Utah from 1985-86 after garnering first-team junior college All-American honors in 1984 at Ricks College.
Andersen is married to the former Stacey Lambert, and they have three sons: Keegan (21) and twins Chasen and Hagen (17). Keegan is currently a sophomore tight end on Utah State's football team, while Chasen and Hagen are both seniors at Logan High School. Andersen's brother, Mark, is USU's director of football operations.
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